Slow tasks for quiet days

A few much needed days off. I spent my time flicking through some new books of Elizabethan embroidery techniques (included a few different versions of that ever-niggling plait stitch). I want to try them all out so I spent the afternoon stretching up my ‘home’ embroidery frame. This is slow, quiet work I prefer to do at home.
Stretching a cloth onto a frame takes time. The fabric must be pressed, a straight grain fold made at the top and bottom and then placed exactly matching the middle of the bar tape. Then you over-stitch the fabric to the tape, keeping the stitches evenly spaced every few mm. Repeat for the other bar.
Next you take a length of twill tape and bast it to either side of the cloth.
(the next stage will be to tension the cloth onto the roller bars and stretch the sides, but I didn’t have enough tape and pins so that’s a job for another day)
As I attach the cloth, fixing it down with hundreds of tiny stitches, wonder about the hidden labour – all the essential but usually unseen or undone stages in a process…

Posted in PhD

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